The 7 Best PDF Readers for Windows In 2020. Finding the right PDF for Windows that suits all your needs is not a big deal. There are many options with varying degrees of utility. When it comes to basic requirements for reading PDFs, modern web browsers are often all that is needed. They are already doing what most free PDF readers can do. However, for those looking for a PDF with advanced features that can perform specific tasks like annotations, digital signatures, form filling, etc., knowing the options available can make a big difference.
For Windows 10, in particular, a very popular operating system, there are quite a few PDF readers to choose from. This is why we decided to compile our personal list of 7 PDF readers for Windows that are the best free PDF readers in 2019 and 2020.
7 Best PDF Readers for Windows
Depending on what you need for the PDF, this list can get confusing if you list the options in a specific order. So instead, we decided to compile a list of the best free PDF readers, out of seven of which you can choose the one that suits you best.
Perhaps the most powerful program on this list should be Adobe Acrobat Reader. It is also one of the most popular PDF software options for both basic and advanced features. This particular program is recommended for all PDF tasks, as it’s not uncommon to come across a PDF file that requires an advanced PDF reader.
Adobe Acrobat Reader may seem like a bloated product, especially compared to the others on this list, but that’s because it’s the only product that has a solution for everything PDF-related. It is the most useful software on the list for finding solutions for your PDFs where other PDFs might not work. There are various reading modes, text highlighting, the ability to add notes and handle fill forms, allows the use of digital signatures, stamps and much more. Adobe supports multiple tabbed PDFs, which allows you to open and read those PDFs at the same time. The craziest thing about all this is that the basic version of this product is completely free. When using one of the other free PDF readers, you may notice that larger files may not be fully processed. Adobe Acrobat Reader does not have this problem. Regardless of the size of the file, it will be compiled and processed easily, providing a readable PDF file for viewing every time.
If you’re looking for something lighter, PDF-XChange Lite is a free alternative to reading PDFs for Windows 10. The PDF-XChange brand has undergone a complete overhaul and simplification, replacing â€œViewerâ€ with â€œEditorâ€ in the title, as the original didn’t offer basic editing features for free. With the changes, it now provides a lightweight, appropriately named interface and functions for reading, printing, annotating, saving images, text, and more within a PDF file. This, in addition to the developers’ announcement that the free version will come with over 60% of what you get from the paid version, makes PDF-XChange Lite a great entry into the PDF Reader category.
SumatraPDF is another lightweight open source PDF reader available for Windows operating systems ranging from Windows 10 to XP. Naturally, anything that is marked as open source means that the product is free and open to the public, while still being customizable to download. SumatraPDF is licensed under the GPLv3 and supports not only PDF but also EPUB, MOBI, FB2, CHM, XPS and DjVu formats. Of course, SumatraPDF, while providing excellent readability, lacks features. It is lightweight, after all. It does not include annotations, signing documents and filling out forms that some may consider a violation of the transaction. However, if you need light, SumatraPDF comes as a 64-bit installer that is no more than 5MB in size.
If you are looking for software with all the basic features and functionality that one would get from a PDF reader, Javelin is there. At least Javelin will let you do all your daily activities with ease thanks to its super clean interface and various screen viewing features like full, parallel, continuous, etc. It’s a fairly lightweight product – 2MB, especially compared to Adobe Acrobat Reader DC In addition to the basics, Javelin can help you view DRM-protected PDFs, that is, files that require decryption keys to open.
Apart from Adobe, one of the most famous names in the office software world is Nitro Reader If you’re looking for a free PDF reader that tries to find the perfect balance between usability and the features it offers, then this is the place to go. You will not find a plethora of unnecessary features that you are unlikely to use. Instead, Nitro Reader provides a more serious style of reading PDFs with a nice interface that mimics similar applications straight from the Microsoft Office suite. In addition to the basic functionality, Nitro Reader has its own QuickSign digital signature feature that makes it easy to digitally sign documents. It also keeps individual documents safe by ensuring that only those who have received a digital certificate from you can open the file.
Foxit Reader is both reliable and free, creating a double whammy on the desired potential for most people in the PDF reading market.
like Adobe and Nitro, is a globally recognized brand in the world of document reading software and comparatively lighter than both. Foxit’s official website is well-designed and easy to navigate, offering reliable downloads without the need to install additional malware as Adobe usually does. They also introduced the online document management system ConnectedPDF and it doesn’t try to download unnecessary malware onto your computer.
However, it tries to install a 14-day trial version of Foxit PhantomPDF editor during the installation process, so take a look at that. In the 8.0 update, Foxit also introduced its new online document management system, ConnectedPDF, which keeps your PDF documents online safe and private. This is handy for online collaboration and helps you organize your documents. Foxit is an advanced free PDF reader with all the features you need. You can also get rid of all the bells and whistles that a standard PDF viewer provides by using Foxit Text Viewer. This will remove any complex formatting and allow you to view the document in a simpler notepad-like format.
This entry on the list of the best PDF readers for 2019 and beyond brings with it a fresh new interface and all the standard features. Expert PDF Reader is a free PDF reader for Windows that you can download and use to view PDF files.
The list of included features is the ability to add notes, highlight text, create text boxes, and even create and manage your own stamps. Unlike some, but similar to others on this list, free software has a signature feature. There is an enhanced version of Expert PDF Reader Professional, the latest version of which includes new features to support and save PDF files for an extended period of time. On top of that, it offers new optimization options when dealing with file size and an OCR (Optical Character Recognition) function that makes it easy to scan images that would otherwise be difficult.